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7 Yoga Poses to Help You Digest Daily

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7 Yoga Poses to Help You Digest Daily

 yoga for digestion at home|yoga lifestyles

Practice this yoga for digestion sequence before you go to sleep 

Sometimes, depending on what we eat or how fast we consume our meals, we don’t always feel our best after eating. We might experience bloating, heartburn, or indigestion. Gastrointestinal episodes might feel more intense after a particularly heavy meal and if our lives tend towards being more sedentary. This can affect our sleep cycles and result in pain and discomfort. 

Light exercise, such as walking after a meal, can help aid in digestion. In addition to walking, consider practicing specific yoga postures that help with the digestion and relieve discomfort. While it’s important to wait for a while after eating, typically two hours is recommended, practicing yoga can be very effective for improved comfort.

These 7 postures are some of the most effective we’ve found

1. Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)

yoga for digestion seated pose|yoga lifestyles

This pose stretches the spine and stomach muscles, assisting with digestion. To do this pose, sit in a comfortable cross-legged position. Cross your right knee over your left knee and bring your feet back near your hips. You might find it helpful to sit on a block. Take your left are above your head reaching back aiming your fingertips in the direction of your shoulder blades. Wrap your right arm around your back and aim your right fingers in the direction of your left fingers. Bind if possible, or use a strap to bridge the gap. Hold this position for 20-30 breaths on each side. Repeat a couple of times alternating your legs and arms. 

2. Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose)

yoga for digestion thunderbolt pose|yoga lifestyles

Vajrasana is one of the effective poses to execute after dinner, especially after a heavy meal. Vajrasana helps to stretch and strengthen the upper body while maintaining steady breathing. And by cutting off the blood flow to your lower body, you increase blood flow to your stomach and pelvis. First sit on your feet by bending your knees. You can also sit on a block or bolster if it’s not comfortable to sit all the way back on your heels. Keep your hands on your knees while keeping the spine straight. Inhale and exhale slowly. Focus on each of your breaths finding length and depth. Don’t underestimate the simplicity of this powerful asana. 

3. Balasana (Child’s Pose)

yoga for digestion child's pose|yoga lifestyles

Kneel down and place your forehead on the ground. Keep your arms above the head or, if you prefer, you can keep them relaxed and back by your hips. Knees can be together or separated. Exhale and inhale for a few times and hold this position for as long as it feels good. Balasana helps to relieve bloating and most people find it to be a very relaxing posture that offers a reset.  If your knees aren’t cooperative here, sitting on props might make it accessible. 

4. Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend Pose)

yoga for digestion forward fold|yoga lifestyles

Fold forward from the hip joints, not the waist, and keep your knees at least slightly bent. This can be a difficult pose if you have tight hamstrings, so remember it’s not necessary to fold deeply if it sacrifices your spine in any way. Maintain this pose for 15-20 seconds. Relax and repeat.This pose is especially helpful with preventing constipation and assuaging a bloated abdomen.

5. Ustrasana (Camel Pose)

yoga for digestion camel pose|yoga lifestyles

Camel pose is not only a great yoga for digestion pose. It also helps to strengthen your spinal and abdominal muscles and stretches the psoas and quadriceps. It’s very important to bend from the center of your spine versus the lumbar spine, so if touching your heels feels too challenging, you can hold your low back or support yourself by holding the backs of your legs. Stand on your shins while beginning with your hands on your hips. If it feels safely accessible, try to touch your heels. Keep your head and neck straight and your hips in line with your knees. Hold for 5-10 breaths, relax in child’s pose, and repeat. Take your time and progress slowly. 

6. Pawanmuktasana (Wind Releasing Pose)

yoga for digestion wind releasing pose|yoga lifestyles

This asana is performed by laying on the back, holding both or one of your knees at a time against your chest. Press your knees against your abdomen and hold for several breaths. Relax and then repeat. As the name suggests, this pose helps to release the “wind” or abdominal gas to relieve bloating and indigestion.

7. Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of the Fishes Pose)

yoga for digestion twist|yoga lifestyles

Twists are some of the most productive postures for moving stool through the colon. Ardha Matsyendrasana has many additional benefits, but to be effective, be certain not to slump into the twist. Allow it to be slow and engaging. Sit with your right foot to the outside of your left leg. The left leg can be straight or bend (as pictured). Take your left elbow to the outside of your right thigh. Twist on the exhales practicing deep, dedicated breath work. Do each side for 10-15 breaths.

Beyond gastrointestinal and digestive issues, yoga is an excellent remedy for various other physical difficulties. Bringing yoga into your life is certain to offer you a variety of benefits.

 

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